SHOPPING THE MARKETS OF ITALY OR GRABBING A MEAL?
When it comes to culinary destinations, Eataly is one that allows you to purchase your favorite Italian treats, meats and wines in their market. It also has a number of restaurants whether you're popping in for a quick bite, doing takeout or simply want to sit down to a decadent meal. We sat down with Dino Borri, Eataly's USA's VP of Global Partnerships to get the rundown on their Flatiron property, charcuterie boards and summer wines.
ATHLEISURE MAG: Tell us about your background and how you came to Eataly?
DINO BORRI: I currently serve as Eataly USA’s VP of Global Partnerships. I was born and raised in Bra, a small town in Piemonte, Italy, and the home of the Slow Food movement and the world’s first University of Gastronomic Sciences. I got my start in the food industry in 2000, when Slow Food hired me to organize and coordinate all of our gastronomic events. In 2008, I started collaborating with Eataly Torino, where I soon became the person in charge of opening new Eataly stores all around the world. I lived in Japan for one year, where I curated the opening of all the Eataly locations in Japan. In 2010, I moved to America to launch the first US location in New York City’s Flatiron District. Living and breathing high-quality food and Mediterranean lifestyle, I am now concentrating on developing key partnerships and relationships with like-minded Italian brands abroad for Eataly.
AM: What is the purpose behind Eataly and how does this destination allow shoppers and guests to connect with the various regions of Eataly?
DB: Focused on providing high-quality, sustainable products for all, Eataly is the largest Italian retail and dining experience in the world, transforming the way consumers experience food, beverage and, culture. At Eataly, guests have the unique opportunity to experience Italian culture through markets, counters, cafés, restaurants, and educational offerings that explore the best food and beverage options Italy’s 20 regions and the world has to offer. Since Oscar Farinetti first opened Eataly Torino Italy in 2007, his philosophy – to provide high-quality food, celebrate biodiversity, and create a place to eat, shop, and learn – has spread to 39 stores across the world, including our US flagship NYC Flatiron (2010), Chicago (2013), NYC Downtown (2016), Boston (2016), L.A. (2017), Vegas (2018), Toronto (opening in 2019), and Dallas (opening in 2020).
AM: Why is Eataly a great destination for those that are popping in to enjoy a number of your restaurants or to shop its market?
DB: Eataly offers traditional and authentic Italian food in a vibrant ambiance. At the store, customers can eat what they shop and shop what they eat. One of the best aspects of Eataly is that all of our restaurants, counters, products, and experts, have a story to tell. Each time you come to Eataly, there is something new to explore and learn, no matter whether you’re sitting down to a relaxed meal or simply buying your evening groceries.
AM: Does Eataly have a different vibe or offering depending on which location you go to?
DB: Yes. Each Eataly is customized to its local market and unique from any other store. The stores all have different restaurants, layouts, products, and counters. In addition, we work with local producers in each city in addition to our Italian producers.
AM: With the summer being upon us, what are 3 items that you would suggest we should incorporate into our Charcuterie boards?
DB: Culatello di Zibello DOP - Culatello is one of the most prized salumi in Italy: mentions of this delicacy date back to the 15th century. Culatello is produced in the flatlands located north of Parma, near the Po River, and Eataly is the first to be able to sell this delicacy with DOP status imported from Italy.
Quattro Portoni Casatica Cheese - This is a semi-seasoned cheese with a flowering crust, and pearly white, soft center. Made with buffalo milk, the flavor is delicate and creamy with a velvety texture.
Lingue Di Suocera – light, crispy, and made from all-natural ingredients, these long flatbreads – in fact, their name translates to “tongues” thanks to their shape – are a flavorful vehicle for the salumi and cheeses on your antipasto board.
Il Mongetto Cheese Condiment Set - Sweet additions like the fig, pear, or quince jam in this condiment set are a perfect compliment to soft cheeses and savory cured meats. This set by Il Mongetto is made with top quality fruits and artisanal production methods in Piemonte.
AM: In terms of wines and sweet treats, what are 3 items that we should keep in mind?
DB: Spritz Bianco – Made with Sangiovese Bianco, St. Germaine, Soda Water, FarmOne Basil. The Spritz Bianco is a refreshing alternative to summer’s most popular cocktail. This Spritz is offered at SERRA FIORITA by Birreria within Eataly NYC Flatiron, our seasonal restaurant on the roof that now reflects the Italian countryside in the summertime.
Riesling Borgogno - Langhe DOC Riesling – Made from young Riesling vines in the Langhe valley by one of the oldest winemakers in Piemonte, the crisp freshness and pleasant acidity of this white make it a versatile wine that pairs well with summer dishes like fish and vegetables.
Mandarinata - Made by Ligurian producer Niasca Portofino, Mandarinata is a pleasantly sweet and refreshing soda made from concentrated juice of mandarins from the Tigullio Gulf. Excellent on its own, this soda also pairs perfectly in a cocktail for a classic Italian aperitivo.
*Please note that all of these products listed can either be found in one of Eataly’s stores or online.